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Panthers swim to another dual win

Casimir Simonson clocked a winning time of 2:22.16 in the 200-yard individual medley during Park Rapids' win over Perham Thursday night. Vance Carlson / Enterprise

Todd Fritze had the opportunity to put some swimmers in different events for Thursday night's dual meet against Perham/New York Mills.

The head coach of the Park Rapids boys swimming and diving team discovered some important things during the Panthers' 105-57 Mid-State Conference win.

"I found out a lot in this meet. This is only our fourth dual meet and we have some big meets coming up. We did a little moving around because we needed to see some different things," said Fritze. "We put kids in where we thought they would go fast. We're trying to get the fastest team we can get."

The Panthers swam fast all night, winning the first nine events (including going 1-2-3 in two events and 1-2 in five events) in coasting to the win and improving to 4-0 in dual meets this season.

Casimir Simonson, Zach Behrens, Zach Fritze and Spencer Fritze opened the meet with a winning time of 1:51.80 in the 200-yard medley relay.

Marcus Benson won the 200 freestyle in 1:59.10 while Thomas Williams followed in 2:09.68. The Panthers also went 1-2 in the 200 individual medley with Simonson clocking a winning time of 2:22.16 and Seth Breitweser following in 2:28.91.

Another 1-2 showing followed as Matthew Benson won the 50 freestyle in 23.23 and Behrens was second in 24.79. Park Rapids added a 1-2-3 showing in diving with Spencer Fritze (225.80 points) and Breitweser (158.75) leading the way as the Panthers built a 59-15 advantage.

Zach Fritze's 1:03.13 and Elliot Nichols' 1:15.61 produced to a 1-2 finish in the 100 butterfly before Matthew Benson's 51.93 and Simonson's 57.77 led the way in a 1-2-3 showing in the 100 freestyle to push the lead to 84-21.

A 1-2 effort by Behrens (5:45.27) and Williams (5:46.81) in the 500 freestyle was followed by a winning time of 1:37.27 by Marcus Benson, Breitweser, Williams and Matthew Benson in the 200 freestyle relay for a 105-30 lead.

That was all the scoring for Park Rapids, which swam exhibition in the final three events. Marcus Benson (58.92) and Zach Fritze (1:06.68) would have finished 1-2 in the 100 backstroke while Spencer Fritze's 1:08.28 would have been good for first place in the 100 breaststroke. The Panthers also would have finished 1-2 in the 400 freestyle relay behind a winning time of 3:41.26 by Matthew Benson, Breitweser, Williams and Spencer Fritze and a runner-up time of 3:41.82 by Behrens, Simonson, Zach Fritze and Marcus Benson.

"Our practices have been really good and our times keep dropping. The guys are getting after it in practice and that is making a difference," said Fritze. "We have a good group that we can move around and be pretty successful. We may have a different look in a couple of weeks. The key is to get the guys swimming fast in late February and March."

Park Rapids 105, Perham/New York Mills 57

200 medley relay: 1, Park Rapids (Simonson, Behrens, Z. Fritze, S. Fritze), 1:51.80. 2, Perham, 2:08.62. 3, Park Rapids (Backmann, Hemenway, Nichols, Walsh), 2:17.53. JV: Park Rapids (I. Zinniel, Runyan, J. Zinniel, Odor), 2:27.13.

200 freestyle: 1, Mar. Benson, PR, 1:59.10. 2, Williams, PR, 2:09.68. 3, Skorup, PNYM, 2:23.27. 4, J. Zinniel, PR, 2:40.70. 5, Becker, PNYM, 2:45.52. JV: Cempa, PR, 2:47.63.

200 individual medley: 1, Simonson, PR, 2:22.16. 2, Breitweser, PR, 2:28.91. 3, Kehoe, PNYM, 2:44.78. 4, Backmann, PR, 3;04.93. JV: Runyan, PR, 2:58.70.

50 freestyle: 1, Mat. Benson, PR, 23.23. 2, Behrens, PR, 24.79. 3, Ky. Swanson, PNYM, 27.36. 4, Nichols, PR, 29.02. 5, Karels, PNYM, 29.25. JV: Hemenway, PR, 30.60; Odor, PR, 32.54.

Diving: 1, S. Fritze, PR, 225.80. 2, Breitweser, PR, 158.75. 3, Cempa, PR, 113.50.

100 butterfly: 1, Z. Fritze, PR, 1:03.13. 2, Nichols, PR, 1:15.61. 3, Ke. Swanson, PNYM, 1:26.66. 4, Backmann, PR, 1:35.86.

100 freestyle: 1, Mat. Benson, PR, 51.93. 2, Simonson, PR, 57.77. 3, Walsh, PR, 1:00.71. 4, Ky. Swanson, PNYM, 1:03.93. 5, Becker, PNYM, 1:18.94. JV: Hemenway, PR, 1:15.74.

500 freestyle: 1, Behrens, PR, 5:45.27. 2, Williams, PR, 5:46.81. 3, Kehoe, PNYM, 6:49.50. 4, Karels, PNYM, 7:03.51. 5, I. Zinniel, PR, 7:08.08.

200 freestyle relay: 1, Park Rapids (Mar. Benson, Breitweser, Williams, Mat. Benson), 1:37.27. 2, Perham, 1:54.11. 3, Park Rapids (Walsh, J. Zinniel, Backmann, Nichols), 1:54.81. JV: Park Rapids (Cempa, Odor, Runyan, Hemenway), 2:08.55.

100 backstroke: Ke. Swanson, PNYM, 1:18.59. 2, Bieger, PNYM, 1:38.13. 3, Frohling, PNYM, 1:54.33. Exhibition: Mar. Benson, PR, 58.92; Z. Fritze, PR, 1:06.68; J. Zinniel, PR, 1:28.53.

100 breaststroke: 1, Skorup, PNYM, 1:19.79. Exhibition: S. Fritze, PR, 1:08.28; Walsh, PR, 1:27.20; I. Zinniel, PR, 1:42.20. JV: Runyan, PR, 1:36.18.

400 freestyle relay: 1, Perham, 5:00.75. Exhibition: Park Rapids (Mat. Benson, Breitweser, Williams, S. Fritze), 3:41.26; Park Rapids (Behrens, Simonson, Z. Fritze, Mar. Benson), 3:41.82.